Thurman Street Bridge newsletter

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Attached is the latest newsletter relating to the rebuilding of the NW Thurman Bridge:  Newsletter5

Thurman Street Bridge Closure Update!

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The Bureau of Transportation has provided the following update: Newsletter4 for the Thurman Street Bridge rehabilitation project, now scheduled for April 7th. Waterline relocation work will precede the closure.


Transportation System Plan Review

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The Transportation Committee is reviewing the current City of Portland Transportation Systems Plan (TSP) projects listing for Northwest Portland. Comments, including suggested additions, changes and deletions, will be submitted to the City for consideration in the upcoming update to the TSP. The TSP becomes a part of the Comprehensive Plan, also now being updated. You can view the committee’s working annotated list of projects at : NWDA TSP Improvements .

NW Couch Overcrossing Improvement Funded

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The Transportation Committee is pleased to announce that a proposed fix for the NW Couch overcrossing of the I-405 freeway, designed in a collaborative City of Portland and ODOT effort, has been funded in the 2015-2018 State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). The fix will be directed at improving pedestrian and bike safety across what is a functioning freeway on-ramp from West Burnside Street. The project is described in the following preliminary drawings:

Final_ProjectAreaVicinityMapExhibitA_FINAL ExistingOperationsMapExhibitB_FINAL Final_ProposedImprovementsExhibitC_FINAL

The improvements will include curb extensions, squaring off of street corners and reconfiguring NW 16th at the west side of this overcrossing. The estimated cost is $2.3 million. Final plans and a schedule remain to be worked out.

Thurman Bridge Open House

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NW Thurman Bridge Rehab – June 27th Public Open House Flyer pdf

Bus Line 15 – Westbound layover change

TriMet has been conducting outreach to neighbors and businesses along NW Thurman from 27th Street to the Gordon intersection since June of 2011 regarding the westbound layover location for Line 15 buses. Issues with noise and site distance for cars, bikes and pedestrians at NW 27th where Line 15 buses layover in the morning hours triggered a TriMet safety analysis conducted at the request of the Northwest District Association.


The analysis determined that the current westbound Line 15 layover location at the NW corner of 27th needed additional safety measures. When a TriMet bus was parked during a layover, vehicles crossing NW Thurman at 27th encountered a site distance problem because there was no stop sign on NW Thurman at that intersection.


TriMet worked with the city traffic office to have a four-way stop installed at NW Thurman & 27th Street including signs and pavement markings which alleviated the site distance issue. However, the noise issue remains a challenge because of dense housing located only a few feet from the current westbound layover location.


TriMet conducted additional outreach to neighbors around NW Thurman & 28th and determined that this intersection would be a more amenable location for the morning-only westbound layover location because:


  • The intersection has an existing four-way stop
  • No on-street parking removal is required
  • The closest resident is over 100 feet away compared to 50 feet away at 27th
  • The business located at the NW corner of 28th has no issues with a layover change


Given the analysis, outreach and a similar safety profile at NW 28th, the westbound layover location will be moved from NW 27th & Thurman to the bus stop located at NW 28th & Thurman (NW corner by Romaine Electric) effective Sunday, September 2, 2012.


In addition, to mitigate noise at the new layover location, we have changed the schedule so the first layover will be at approximately 7a.m. rather than at 5:45a.m. There are no afternoon or evening layovers at this location.


We hope these measures will help to make serving NW Thurman Street a safer and more pleasant experience for everyone. Thank you for your patience with this process.

Portland Bike Count Volunteer Opportunity

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Every summer, the Portland Bureau of Transportation implements a count of bike traffic across the city. The count uses volunteers to monitor pre-determined intersections that are part of the bike network. The data from this survey contributes to the identification and implementation of traffic safety improvements that benefit all modes of transportation. The count is fun and informative, and a great opportunity to get the neighborhood involved.

With 68% of the locations already assigned, we still have 73 locations left to be monitored. We’ve noticed that at least one of these intersections falls within your neighborhood association boundary. Please encourage your neighborhood residents to come to a training and participate in the bike count! Each volunteer shift is only 2 hours and the timing is somewhat flexible.

Bike Count Trainings:

If you are interested in volunteering for the bike count this summer and have never done so before, we ask that you attend a quick, informative training. There are three new trainings lined up in July (the first one is tomorrow!). All trainings will be held at the Portland Building downtown, 1120 SW 5th Ave, and will last no longer than one hour. RSVP by responding to this e-mail to let me know which one you’d like to attend.

Please spread the word!

Tuesday, July 17, 5pm (tomorrow!)

8th floor, Burnside Room


Wednesday, July 25, 10:30am

8th floor, Burnside Room


Monday, July 30, 5pm

8th floor, Burnside Room


About the Bike Count:

When you volunteer for the bike count you will count bicycle movement, rider gender, and helmet use for two hours at one intersection. Most intersections are counted from 4pm to 6pm (and a few are 7am to 9am). Each intersection needs to be counted once on any warm weather Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday, from June through September. This means we’ve got a little over two months left to count these locations. Many volunteers decide to do more than one location because it is really a lot of fun! You can check out past bike count reports, instructions, and more here

If you have questions, please feel free to be in touch, and I hope to see you at one of the up-coming trainings!


Taylor Sutton

City of Portland Bureau of Transportation

1120 SW 5th Ave, Ste 800

Portland, Oregon 97204 503-823-4533


To help ensure equal access to City programs, services and activities, the City of Portland will reasonably modify policies/procedures and provide auxiliary aids/services to persons with disabilities. Call 503-823-5831, TDD 503-823-6868 with such requests or visit

CROW Administrative Rules Review – Hardship Exemptions Letter 5-21-12


RE: CROW Administrative Rules Review – Hardship Exemptions

Dear Solid Waste Regulators:

Northwest District Association (NWDA), the city-recognized neighborhood association representing much of northwestern Portland, has previously endorsed the City Council’s continuing efforts to get dumpsters off of our sidewalks. We continue to do so today, not withstanding the frustratingly slow pace of this effort.


That noted, the NWDA is troubled by several aspects of the draft administrative rule which will substantially weaken and undermine Council mandated efforts to remove these nuisance pieces of private property from the public right-of-way. Our concerns are:


  1. The proposed rule fails to make clear the notion that any hardship exemption, if granted, is a one-time relief for a particular property. We recommend that the rule explicitly state that, following the granting of a hardship exemption, any subsequent change of ownership or change in property use does not create a new right to apply for a new hardship exemption.


  1. The proposed rule is too generous to applicants with a broad or sustained history of documented CROW related complaints or violations. The hardship exemption is intended to provide a temporary, one-time path to compliance for small scale operators, not a permanent loophole to chronic violators.   We recommend language which disqualified applications from entities or property owners with a prior history of CROW complaints violations at two or more locations. The “two or more” test should include the property, which is the subject of the application.


  1. In the portion of the proposed rule where applicants are required to show that they have considered “…all reasonable alternatives”, the rule should specifically require the applicant to explore the use of (perhaps multiple) smaller containers and / or more frequent pickup.


  1. The proposed rule includes an effort to assess applicant ability to pay for improvements. However, the proposed test is easily subject to manipulation by applicants – particularly in cases where the applicant is a corporate entity. Some examples:


  1. A newly incorporated business will have little or no income history. Because of this, they are likely to easily meet the “costs exceed 4% of GIA” test.


  1. While an applicant may have little income history, the applicant may be owned by an entity with substantial income history. Such a circumstance would not be revealed by the rule as proposed.


  1. The cost of required improvements could be funded from cash or other liquid assets held on the applicant’s balance sheet. However, the rule as proposed asks only about income history and makes no inquiries at all about the condition of the applicant’s balance sheet. Such a narrow inquiry would not reveal the presence of substantial liquid assets (and associated ability to pay) if same existed.


We recommend a rule which requires three year’s tax returns for both the applicant and for the entity which owns or controls the applicant, together with a current balance sheet for each, which would provide a far better basis to make a judgment about the ability of the applicant (and its parent, if appropriate) to fund the cost of improvements. The percent of AGI test should be expanded to consider other balance sheet based resources.


  1. The proposed rule does not include a minimum level of financial effort (in the form of expenditure on improvements) before a hardship could be considered to exist. If the applicant’s GIA value is very low, four percent of that figure will also be low even in cases where the arithmetic produces a comically weak standard of financial effort.  We recommend language which sets the standard of financial effort at the greater of a set percentage of GIA or a fixed dollar amount.



  1. Clarify the “Letter of Noncompliance” section ((Part 5.3B(B)2)) to ensure that the operator(s) of any businesses will be notified of noncompliance along with affected property owner(s). Currently, the language is vague about who will be sent the noncompliance letter, saying only that BPS will notify “any other persons who reasonably appear to have an interest.” Since Rule 5.3B is titled, “Business Compliance and Enforcement: Containers in the Right of Way, the rule should specify that the non-complying business is specifically listed as a recipient of the Letter of Noncompliance along with the property owner.


Thank you for this opportunity to comment of the proposed rule. Every effort to meet your previously expressed commitment to City Council (given on February 23, 2011) that the “…rule would be in place by early summer…” is noted and appreciated. Unsightly storage of private property has continued to proliferate and obstruct pedestrian and wheelchair access on our community’s sidewalks. The clarification of the hardship clause will benefit all stakeholders.




Philip R Selinger

Transportation Committee




Rebecca Hamilton

Safety and Livability Committee

TriMet Fares & Service Change Update

TriMet Fares & Service Change Update 

From TriMet -
As you know, thousands of people provided feedback in our Budget Challenges & Choices survey during December and January. Many told us they could live with a fare increase if that prevented further service cuts. We also heard a strong preference for keeping bus lines running – even those with low ridership.
This feedback, along with recommendations from our Board of Directors and Budget Task Force, helped us narrow down our ideas into an initial proposal. We invite you to review for current proposed changes in fares and service.
Several proposed service changes may be of special interest to you. The initial proposal has details and maps but here is a brief outline.

Lines 16-Front Ave/St Johns, 17-NW 21st Ave, 77-Broadway/Halsey
Line 17 would end at Union Station instead of Montgomery Park or Sauvie Island.
Line 77 would serve the current Line 17 route on NW Glisan/Everett streets and NW 21st Avenue to Montgomery Park.
Line 77 would no longer run on NW Northrup/Lovejoy Streets, but this stretch would still be served by Portland Streetcar. A few blocks along NW 25th Avenue between NW Lovejoy and Vaughn Streets, along NW 29th Avenue between NW 31st Avenue and Nicolai Street, and along NW Station Way between Irving and Northrup Streets would not have service.
Line 16 would serve Front Avenue, the current Line 17 route in portions of the NW industrial area, and along St. Helens Road to Sauvie Island via Linnton and St. Johns. Buses would only run during peak hours on weekdays instead of all day weekdays and Saturday.
Line 16 would travel through the industrial area on NW Guam Street, 35th and Yeon avenues instead of NW Front Avenue between 26th and Kittridge Avenue. Additional hours of service could be added depending on passenger demand.
Line 16 Rivergate trips would be served by a shuttle bus from St. Johns. Buses would travel between St. Johnsand Jubitz along Marine Drive during peak hours.

The initial proposal takes into account ridership, the availability of alternative service, the use of service for work and school trips, and the operating efficiency of the proposed changes. We also look at transit equity issues to make sure the changes would not disproportionately affect low-income populations and communities of color.
We will continue gathering feedback. Community open houses begin this week and run through February 16. You can also submit feedback via the website. All this input will help inform our refined proposal which we expect to release in early March before our public hearings occur later next month.

Saturday, February 11, Beaverton Library, Conference Room, 12375 SW 5th St., 1-3 p.m.
Monday, February 13, Multnomah County East, County Health Center, Sharron Kelly A&B, 600 NE 8th St., Gresham, 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Wednesday, February 15, Portland Building, Room C, 1120 SW 5th Ave., 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Thursday, February 16, Clackamas Town Center, Community Room, Lower Level, 12000 SE 82nd Ave., 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Draft ODOT NW Couch/I-405 On-ramp Intersection Improvement

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DRAFT: ODOT NW Couch/I-405 On-ramp Intersection Improvement

I405-Couch-12052011 (pdf)

Draft ODOT intersection improvement at NW Couch & I-405 on-ramp

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